Football: Sidney can’t keep up late with Edgewood


Cougars score 2 late TDs to pull away to 37-10 win over Yellow Jackets

By Bryant Billing - bbilling@sidneydailynews.com



Sidney's EJ Davis is forced out of bounds by Edgewood's Jake Valerio at Edgewood on Friday.

Sidney's EJ Davis is forced out of bounds by Edgewood's Jake Valerio at Edgewood on Friday.


Sidney's EJ Davis runs as Edgewood's Brody Hembree at Edgewood on Friday.


Sidney senior quarterback Donavin Johnson runs from Edgewood’s Brayden Smith during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney junior receiver Sam Reynolds waits to catch the ball after the ball bounced off the hands of Edgewood’s Layne Howell during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney’s EJ Davis hauls in a pass as Edgewood’s Carter Smith gives chase during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney's Julius Spradling braces for a hit from Edgewood's Brick Barker at Edgewood on Friday.


Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

TRENTON — Sidney kept up with Trenton Edgewood until the final minutes of a Division II playoff opener on Friday at Kumler Field. Though the Yellow Jackets’ season came to an end, coach Adam Doenges said the performance was indicative of the grittiness of the group.

Edgewood scored two touchdowns in the final two and a half minutes to pull away to a 37-10 victory over Sidney, which finishes 5-6 overall. It was the second consecutive playoff appearance for the Yellow Jackets, which earned No. 12 seeds both last year and this season.

Zane Cline recovered and returned a fumble for a touchdown with 7:14 left in the fourth quarter to pull the squad within 23-10.

Sidney attempted and nearly recovered an onside kick, but the Cougars managed to get possession, ran several minutes off the clock and scored when Tavionne Crosby scored on a 4-yard TD run with 2:38 left.

Edgewood added a late insurance touchdown when Brick Barker returned a fumble 56 yards for a touchdown with 18 seconds left.

“Obviously things got away at the end, when you’ve got to start trying stuff and make some gambles,” Doenges said. “… We tell the kids going into games like this, 95 percent of the game is going to be played pretty evenly. So that means you’re down to five to seven plays where it’s going to make a difference.

“… Our kids battled and gave it their all. But (Edgewood) is a pretty good team, and they make you make those mistakes by leaning, leaning and leaning on you. At the end of the day, they made the plays.”

It was the closest victory for the Cougars (8-2) this season. After its first three games, Edgewood had won six in a row by at least 35 points and had leads of at least 21 points by halftime. The squad’s wing-T offense led the Southwest Ohio Conference with an average of 381.7 yards per game but managed 100 less on Friday.

“Offensively they do some tough stuff and are a unique opponent to get ready for,” Doenges said. “… The kids did an awesome job. We had great scout sessions and the kids bought into our game plan. But eventually they’re going to find a way. They lean, lean, lean on you. And defensively, they’re just as good, if not better on that side of the ball.”

Sidney will lose 21 seniors to graduation, including linebacker/running back E.J. Davis and lineman Jaden Swiger, who were first team all-Miami Valley League selections.

“It’s a group that I’ve enjoyed watching grow up and mature as human beings,” Doenges said. “There’s still work to do. I’ve got the bulk of them in class right now, so it’s over football-wise, but it’s still not over being a coach.”

Neither squad scored in the first quarter. Sidney’s closest attempt came on its first drive, when it turned the ball over on downs inside Edgewood’s 20-yard line.

The Cougars capped off a lengthy drive when Jay Dailey scored on a 13-yard TD run with 8:21 left in the second quarter to take a 7-0 lead. Sidney followed with a quick three-and-out and punted.

The Cougars returned the punt to Sidney’s 44-yard line and scored soon after on a 9-yard TD run by Dailey to take a 13-0 lead with 5:51 left after a missed extra point.

Davis hauled in a long pass on Sidney’s next drive to move the squad into Edgewood territory, and Carson Taylor made a 43-yard field goal with 3:21 left to close the gap to 13-3.

The Cougars drove before halftime and scored on a 30-yard field goal to boost the lead to 16-3 at halftime.

Senior quarterback Donavin Johnson had a pass intercepted early in the third quarter, and Edgewood scored soon after on a 12-yard TD run by Tavionne Crosby.

But Sidney’s defense kept the squad from scoring the rest of the quarter, including forcing a turnover on downs at the 4-yard line.

The Yellow Jackets turned it over in the red zone early in the fourth quarter, but Cline came up with the fumble recovery inside the 5 and returned it for a TD with 7:14 left to close the gap to 13 points.

“It’s nice. Good things happen to good kids who stick around for a while,” Doenges said of Cline’s recovery. “That was nice to get a little momentum. Fifty-fifty call on the onside kick; I thought we had it there. That’s one of those six or seven plays that make a difference in the game, and it didn’t go our way. The kids continued to battle though.”

Johnson completed 14-of-23 passes for 171 yards with two interceptions. He finishes the season with 1,336 passing yards, nine touchdowns and 11 interceptions. He ran for a team-best 558 yards and six TDs.

Davis caught four passes for 98 yards and completed one pass for 40 yards. Devin Taborn led the squad with 7.5 tackles.

Davis finishes the season with 777 all-purpose yards and six touchdowns. Sam Reynolds led Sidney with 546 receiving yards and four touchdowns.

Junior Myles Vordemark finishes the season with 68 tackles, three forced fumbles and two interceptions. Swiger finishes with 60 tackles, 6.5 sacks and one fumble recovery and senior Chris Hudgins finishes with 58.5 tackles and two forced fumbles.

Sidney’s EJ Davis is forced out of bounds by Edgewood’s Jake Valerio at Edgewood on Friday.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2021/11/web1_DSC_7341.jpgSidney’s EJ Davis is forced out of bounds by Edgewood’s Jake Valerio at Edgewood on Friday.

Sidney’s EJ Davis runs as Edgewood’s Brody Hembree at Edgewood on Friday.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2021/11/web1_DSC_7319.jpgSidney’s EJ Davis runs as Edgewood’s Brody Hembree at Edgewood on Friday.

Sidney senior quarterback Donavin Johnson runs from Edgewood’s Brayden Smith during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2021/11/web1_DSC_7261.jpgSidney senior quarterback Donavin Johnson runs from Edgewood’s Brayden Smith during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney junior receiver Sam Reynolds waits to catch the ball after the ball bounced off the hands of Edgewood’s Layne Howell during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2021/11/web1_SDN110221SidneyEdgewood.jpgSidney junior receiver Sam Reynolds waits to catch the ball after the ball bounced off the hands of Edgewood’s Layne Howell during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney’s EJ Davis hauls in a pass as Edgewood’s Carter Smith gives chase during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2021/11/web1_DSC_7152.jpgSidney’s EJ Davis hauls in a pass as Edgewood’s Carter Smith gives chase during a Division II playoff opener on Friday in Trenton. Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News

Sidney’s Julius Spradling braces for a hit from Edgewood’s Brick Barker at Edgewood on Friday.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2021/11/web1_DSC_7035.jpgSidney’s Julius Spradling braces for a hit from Edgewood’s Brick Barker at Edgewood on Friday.Luke Gronneberg | Sidney Daily News
Cougars score 2 late TDs to pull away to 37-10 win over Yellow Jackets

By Bryant Billing

bbilling@sidneydailynews.com

Reach Bryant Billing at 937-538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter and @BryantBillingSDN on Facebook.

Reach Bryant Billing at 937-538-4818, or follow @SidneyOHSports on Twitter and @BryantBillingSDN on Facebook.